Poser Features as Add-ons?



  • Hi guys. This is just a post to try and feel out your position on this topic. I notice that Poser when Poser adds a new feature, like Bullet physics, a lot of times it doesn't get used. (I've never used it. Not to say it isn't useful, but for me personally, meh.) So I'm wondering if it might be more advantageous for SM and us as customers, if Poser were to add new features to Poser via addon packs? If you don't need it, you don't have to buy it, and it might even keep the cost of the core program down. Or you could always buy the regular Poser program, and as you get more experienced you could buy the addon packs separately, learn to use them and eventually upgrade to the pro version. What do you think?


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    As a developer I can tell you that this will

    • raise the core cost, not lower it
    • increase the number of bugs in the system by a factor of 2
    • make it more difficult to diagnose problems because with all the combinations of add-ons there will be 32 or 64 versions of the running program instead of 2 (Pro or basic)
    • slow down releases as the QA team will have to test every possible combination of add-ons present or not present against every single feature
      or
    • make the quality far worse than it is because QA will simply test two combinations and skip the actual 64 or whatever

    The latter problem often leads to the last problem (well known in other programs)

    • The developers just abandon a particular add-on or a particular new feature because they can't make it work with the add-on. The result is reduced functionality vs. the fully-integrated non-modular product.


  • @bagginsbill said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    As a developer I can tell you that this will

    • raise the core cost, not lower it
    • increase the number of bugs in the system by a factor of 2
    • make it more difficult to diagnose problems because with all the combinations of add-ons there will be 32 or 64 versions of the running program instead of 2 (Pro or basic)
    • slow down releases as the QA team will have to test every possible combination of add-ons present or not present against every single feature
      or
    • make the quality far worse than it is because QA will simply test two combinations and skip the actual 64 or whatever

    The latter problem often leads to the last problem (well known in other programs)

    • The developers just abandon a particular add-on or a particular new feature because they can't make it work with the add-on. The result is reduced functionality vs. the fully-integrated non-modular product.

    1.I'd like to know how it would raise the core cost? What am I not understanding?

    1. I would think it would speed up releases, not slow them down. I would think that with the Poser release schedule, they'd could release the core program, and hold back any add-on they can't make work. I think I'd rather see them do that than to release a program that seems bug-ridden and requiring constant updates. I'd rather they spend the time squashing those bugs on improving the next version.


  • @eclark1849 Come to think of it, seems like the SR fixes seem to cause more bugs than they fix. I haven't updated since I bought the program. Everything's working fine so far. I think I'll keep it like it is.



  • @eclark1849 I finally updated to SR7, and I haven't run into any issues. I only waited because folks were reporting problems, but Poser finally prompted me about the update, and it updated without issues.


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    As just one example, suppose SuperFly was not core to P11, but was a plugin or add-on (whatever you want to call it).

    Now every line of code that deals with SuperFly node editing would have to be guarded by an extra bit of logic to say: "if (superFlyAvailable) doX() else doY()" and the writing of all the doY() simple does not take place today nor does it have to. In this add-on configuration, there's more code to write. More code = more work. More work = more bugs.

    It is less work to add SuperFly and fix 1000 things than to MAYBE add SuperFly and fix 2000 things.


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    @eclark1849 said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    @eclark1849 Come to think of it, seems like the SR fixes seem to cause more bugs than they fix. I haven't updated since I bought the program. Everything's working fine so far. I think I'll keep it like it is.

    That's just nonsense. Now you're talking in direct contradiction to the facts.

    All software bug fixing increases the number of bugs while still decreasing the number of unresolved bugs.

    Only the truly incompetent create more problems than they solve.



  • @bagginsbill said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    @eclark1849 said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    @eclark1849 Come to think of it, seems like the SR fixes seem to cause more bugs than they fix. I haven't updated since I bought the program. Everything's working fine so far. I think I'll keep it like it is.

    That's just nonsense. Now you're talking in direct contradiction to the facts.

    All software bug fixing increases the number of bugs while still decreasing the number of unresolved bugs.

    Only the truly incompetent create more problems than they solve.

    Granted, I may have stated that poorly, the bugs don't increase, but new ones do crop up. That said though, how does that square with your last statement about the incompetent, and adding Superfly later? I seem to recall Poser 11 being delayed for release because they were testing Superfly, which was fine with me. I often delay purchasing software anyway because I want to see what bugs people run into.


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    @eclark1849 said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    how does that square with your last statement about the incompetent, and adding Superfly later?

    Sorry - I don't know what you're asking there.

    The statement about the incompetent was in regard to your assertion (false) that the service release (or any service release) created more problems than it solved. My point was that for you to say that was almost directly claiming the SM developers are incompetent, since you claimed they make more bugs than they fix.

    The addition of a major new feature, such as SuperFly, is not a demonstration of incompetence. So I'm just not tracking how SuperFly and incompetence fit in the same sentence and need squaring.


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    @eclark1849 said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    I seem to recall Poser 11 being delayed for release because they were testing Superfly

    Again - I'm having trouble recognizing your point as well as what facts you're deriving it from. The use of the word "delayed" because they were "testing" is not reflecting the truth about software developement. First it is written, then tested, then released. Those intervals are not "delays".

    All new development also introduces new bugs. No software is "delayed" until all bugs are fixed. All software is released with some known bugs and some unknown bugs which are discovered later. Service releases are created to address those bugs over time.

    The "delay" called "the testing cycle" is not unexpected.

    Was there publication of some internal memo indicating that the actual release was originally planned to happen much earlier than it actually took place?


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    @eclark1849

    Hi Earl, you use Blender right? Me too.
    Blender is very-very stable on my systems. The only issues I am having is with some of the add-ons.

    I truly hope that Poser can stay away from an "add-on" system.

    It would make the coders hairs grey, the testers hair grey, the end users hair grey, and the vendors hairs even more grey.

    Can you imagine that you see something very-very nice that you want to buy and then in the comments it says; Yeah, but for this or that to work properly you need to buy add-on X,Y,or Z.

    And as BB clearly said; I would only make Poser less stable, less user friendly, more buggy and a LOT more costly.

    See the free competition software.
    It is FREE, but when you buy all the tools that are included in Poser?
    Suddenly, it is not so stable, not so end user friendly, and not so cheap any more.



  • @bagginsbill I thought Chuck called it a delay, but I concede it was being tested. I can't check, because I think it was at RDNA. Renderosity might have the post, but I can never make their forum search work.


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    @eclark1849
    If Poser wants to remain a leading 3D app, it has to stay a complete package, providing all tools at hand, and leaving the 3Dart freedom to the end user.



  • @vilters Who said it wouldn't be a complete package? The pro version would still be available. The add-ons would be for the non-pro version.



  • If Poser does this, I'm finished buying Poser.

    I've been down this nickle and dime approach before and the nickles and dimes they charge for addons cost a pretty penny.

    No. Thank. You.



  • My two cents on this, as a customer.

    I'm extremely suspicious of programs that have core features as "optional" paid packages. I always fear that what I buy will not be enough, and then I'll have to buy more stuff that ends up being more expensive than the original purchase.

    With one or two options of a packaged final product I'm more confident on what I buy, instead of a main package and then 10 paid options. A sales manager once told me that customers don't mind paying more, but they hate surprises.

    Consider SketchUp; I love that product, but I was extremely irritated when I found that the way to export OBJ was to buy the $499 option. It made no sense to me, as OBJ is an extremely simple file format. I almost stopped using it for that reason alone. What saved SketchUp for me is that I found a very practical Collada to FBX to OBJ/OBJ to FBX to Collada converter from Autocad, which works nicely for me.

    So, paid options if you wish, but no surprises from customers with the old bait-and-switch, as that backfires really fast I think.



  • @Glitterati3D You use Pro anyway, Traci. This wouldn't affect you at all. All I can say is I would have bought this. It took me some time to switch over to Poser Pro from regular Poser. I would have loved the option of being able to buy the features I wanted and to not bother with the ones i didn't want and still don't use. Obviously, this isn't the path for everyone.


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    We've been using various 3rd party add-ons for years already without much issue from clothing converters to dynamics to render engines and library managers. And until Pro 2014 included bullet physics, Poser physics was available since Poser 6 or 7 as a plug-in. I don't see the issue here. If game companies can do it and manage to still keep their engines free and working correctly with all the optional add-ons they offer, then a software package like Poser that's supposed to take itself seriously in the 3D world should be able to do the same.



  • @AmbientShade said in Poser Features as Add-ons?:

    We've been using various 3rd party add-ons for years already without much issue from clothing converters to dynamics to render engines and library managers. And until Pro 2014 included bullet physics, Poser physics was available since Poser 6 or 7 as a plug-in. I don't see the issue here. If game companies can do it and manage to still keep their engines free and working correctly with all the optional add-ons they offer, then a software package like Poser that's supposed to take itself seriously in the 3D world should be able to do the same.

    Game companies have a revenue stream based on games. They can make the engine free.

    Those 3rd party add-ons were not core features. They were niche items, that added value (I don't know if I have all of them, but I certainly have a lot of them).

    If you want to see how badly addons of core features can work, see the competition, especially when they went from version 3 to version 4. Add up all of those scripts that duplicate core Poser functionality, and you end up spending a lot more than the cost of Poser (and you still don't have a lot of core functionality of Poser, either).

    I do wish more vendors would take advantage of the add-on framework.


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    @ssgbryan
    So you want vendors to use the add-on framework but not the developers themselves?

    And what are you classifying as core features? Aside from LAMH and VWD - which would run about $80 combined if you don't get them on sale, what else is missing?

    Too many variables in that statement for me to agree or disagree with.

    Poser physics isn't a core feature so not having it in the software doesn't affect the core software. And like i said earlier, prior to 2014 it was a plug-in, which demonstrates that the plug-in method is an option without diminishing functionality of the core features. I don't know if it used the bullet engine or something else. Wardrobe Wizard was also a plugin for years. Did that cause problems with the core software for those who didn't have it?

    I'm not familiar with version 3 of "that other software" so I don't have it to compare or contrast with. I'm only familiar with the current version, which is the only one that matters since all the others are past iterations.